Recently, we’ve become more aware of the importance of preserving our wildflowers in order to save our wildlife populations. The poppy (Papaver) is an important wildflower, prevalent in summer when fields are clothed in red. The field poppy: Papaver rhoeas, is the one you need to re-create these natural spectacles. If you have an area set aside for meadow planting, then these are ideal – just direct-sow seed in spring. They also look handsome amongst herbaceous borders, swaying gently alongside structural perennials and shrubs.
They favour a sunny well-drained site and will self-seed freely while attracting a wealth of bees and butterflies to their nectar-rich offerings.
Relatively new to horticultural proceedings is the eye-catching 'Ladybird' - another annual, still in red, but with glorious black spots, looking exactly like giant ladybirds! Seen regularly at RHS Chelsea and other flower shows, it is best used as a border plant, particularly in a rock garden with good drainage.
The vivid orange of Californian poppies is stunning, this along with their silvery feathery foliage makes them a firm favourite. As the sun shines, they will open up their blooms in response and fill your gardens with petalled positivity. Our Vivid Mix contains not only the popular orange but yellows and whites too.
For a real classic, then oriental poppies are a must. Large and romantic, they are perfect border plants and being perennial will pop up every year. 'Orange Glow' features large ruffled petals in glowing amber with a gorgeous black eye. Decadent and dramatic, a bold border statement.
Although more widely available in reds and oranges, there are some subtle poppy colourations available if you're more of a pastel lover. The annual 'Amazing Grey' is a stunning silver blue and of course there is the striking blue Himalayan poppy or Meconopsis. Growing with ease in Scotland, it loves cool wet environments. These electric blue blooms are a little tricky to grow, liking shade, plenty of organic matter and thriving in acidic soil. However, if you're a poppy lover and looking for a challenge, this is for you!
When to plant poppies?
Poppies grow best when planted between March and May, or August and September.
Where is the best place to plant poppies?
Most poppies thrive in moist but well-drained soil and like to be in full sun.
Buy quality Poppy plants from Suttons